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Accutane Side Effect: Bowel Disease

James Marshall's acting and music career ended when he started taking Accutane (isotretinoin), according to As a result of taking the Accutane acne drug, Marshall suffered serious Accutane side effects, including emergency surgery to remove his colon and bowel ailments, leaving him unable to work or forcing him to accept minor roles. 

Marshall, age 44, played U.S. Marine Louden Downey in the 1992 movie A Few Good Men.  He sought at least $11 million in damages for his Accutane-related injuries. He claimed the drug destroyed his intestinal system. Several Hollywood celebrities testified that Marshall was on his way up until bowel ailments derailed his career. Brian Dennehy, a Tony Award-winning actor who has appeared in more than 150 movies, met Marshall in 1991 when they co-starred in Gladiator. Dennehy told jurors Mashall "had a quality that it's hard to define."

An estimated 16 million people took Accutane to treat acne, including people seriously injured by the dangerous drug in Virginia and North Carolina. Accutane was once Roche's second-biggest-selling drug when it went on the market in 1982. Roche pulled Accutane off the market in 2009 after juries awarded millions in damages to former users over bowel disease claims.

Roche seven Accutane side effect cases that went to trial, including a 2010 case where a jury ordered Roche to pay $25.1 million to the victim. Roche argued it didn't pull the drug for safety reasons, and contended Accutane's link to inflammatory bowel disease had not been conclusively proven.

To learn more about Accutane side effects, check out this article.


Richard N. Shapiro
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Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia
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